HOUSTON, TX.- Now on view through September 25, 2022, Clark V. Fox: Subversion and Spectacle, which occupies the entirety of the museum’s galleries, tracks the various periods and aesthetic sensibilities that mark Clark’s oeuvre over six decades, drawing on the complexity of his identities beyond art historical boxes, commercial tropes, and simple classification.
“As an artist beyond categorization, Clark’s prodigious achievements are measured in the outsized influence that his pieces exert on the viewer and the shock waves his work continues to send through contemporary art,” said Station Museum of Contemporary Art Director and exhibition organizer James Harithas.
Through the presentation of more than 350 paintings and assemblage works, the exhibition highlights Clark’s consistent mixing and appropriation of styles and movements from Pop Art to abstraction as a political statement. It coalesces Clark’s position between and beyond the Washington Color School, the Situationist International, Pop Art, and history painting.
Clark is a shapeshifting artist and activist, who challenges our national myth-making, drawing connections between the imagery of consumerism, history, identity, and formalist considerations to dismantle the effects of capitalist culture on our consciousness. His iconoclastic portraits of American heroes provide a framework for reconnection, reinstatement, and reconciliation. “To compare his approach to portraiture, especially to that of Andy Warhol, is to grasp one of Clark’s primary intentions, which is to create works of art based in long artistic traditions, while also inhabiting the successive cultural trends of his own time,” said author and curator Jane Livingston in her essay for the exhibition catalogue.
Clark's work is charged by his Native American background and his personal experience as an artist who began as a child of the anti-establishment 1960s. Writer and art historian Christopher T. Green observes, “The conflict that occurs in front of the color field backdrop is one that strikes at the core tension to Clark’s work and life: the battle between outsider expectations and lived experience, between stereotype and truth to history. “Until the day I die, I will be a hostile Native American” says Clark.